February 21, 2022: The Tommy G. Thompson Center on Public Leadership is delighted to announce that Bob Lang will be honored as the inaugural Tommy G. Thompson Distinguished Public Leadership Award recipient. The ceremony will take place at 11:30am on Wednesday, February 23 at the Wisconsin State Capitol in GAR Hall, Room 417 North. The public is invited to attend.
Consistent with Tommy’s legacy, the Tommy G. Thompson Distinguished Public Leadership Award seeks to recognize Wisconsinites who have committed themselves to public service, worked tirelessly to advance sound public policy, and exhibited virtuous leadership. This award seeks to recognize leaders who have exercised sound judgment and an entrepreneurial spirit, and served as exceptional role models for others in public service.
Bob Lang is the Director of the Wisconsin Legislative Fiscal Bureau, a nonpartisan service agency of the Wisconsin Legislature. Lang joined the Bureau as an analyst in 1971 and became the director in 1977. The Bureau provides fiscal and program information and analyses to the legislature, staffs the Joint Committee on Finance, and focuses on the state’s biennial budget. He received his M.A. in Political Science and Education from the University of Wisconsin–Madison and his B.A. in History from Beloit College. He is a Menasha native and served in the U.S. Army in Vietnam. Lang has served in many leadership capacities outside of the Bureau and currently serves on the La Follette School of Public Affairs Board of Visitors. Big Brothers and Big Sisters of Dane County, Rotary Club of Madison, United Way of Dane County, National Conference of State Legislatures, Association for Public Policy Analysis and Management, and the National Tax Association have all honored Lang for his service.
The Thompson Center sought nominations for the Distinguished Public Leadership Award from across the state. Director Lang was nominated by Ambassador Tom Loftus and La Follette School of Public Affairs Director Susan Yackee. The Thompson Center Faculty Advisory Committee and Public Leadership Board appointed a panel to review nominees and select no more than five finalists to forward to the Faculty Advisory Committee and Public Leadership Board for consideration as award recipients. The panel included Ray Allen, Eloise Anderson, Tim Cullen, Alberta Darling, Pete Farrow, Tom Loftus, Gerald Whitburn, and Cate Zeuske. Their unanimous recommendation of Bob Lang was then approved by the Faculty Advisory Committee and the Public Leadership Board.